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'Ask Astorino' Town Hall Meeting Turns Into 'Tell Astorino' Exchange

Area residents lined up to ask Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino questions at a town hall meeting in Port Chester on Wednesday. One resident asked about the poor condition of roads in Rye and Harrison.
Area residents lined up to ask Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino questions at a town hall meeting in Port Chester on Wednesday. One resident asked about the poor condition of roads in Rye and Harrison. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
More than 300 people packed King Street School in Port Chester on Wednesday for an "Ask Astorino" Town Hall meeting. Dozens of people held up red cards with the word "No" on them, waving them whenever they disagreed with an answer.
More than 300 people packed King Street School in Port Chester on Wednesday for an "Ask Astorino" Town Hall meeting. Dozens of people held up red cards with the word "No" on them, waving them whenever they disagreed with an answer. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
Another audience shot from Wednesday's "Ask Astorino" town hall meeting at King Street School in Port Chester.
Another audience shot from Wednesday's "Ask Astorino" town hall meeting at King Street School in Port Chester. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino giving his closing thanks for more than 300 people at Wednesday's town hall meeting in Port Chester. “Whether you clapped or booed, we thank you," he said.
Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino giving his closing thanks for more than 300 people at Wednesday's town hall meeting in Port Chester. “Whether you clapped or booed, we thank you," he said. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
Wednesday's was the third "Ask Astorino" town hall this year. The first two were in Cortlandt and White Plains. Aides handed out flyers detailing Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino's accomplishments.
Wednesday's was the third "Ask Astorino" town hall this year. The first two were in Cortlandt and White Plains. Aides handed out flyers detailing Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino's accomplishments. Photo Credit: Jon Craig

PORT CHESTER, N.Y. -- The third "Ask Astorino" Town Hall meeting was more like listen and then tell Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino what you think -- actually, shout it.

The Republican who is running for a third term this year offered long answers Wednesday night to questions on immigration, his support for the County Center gun show and why Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposal for free college tuition will never be free.

Astorino was frequently interrupted by people waving red cards with the word "No" on them and angry outbursts.

The county executive used the first 30 minutes to discuss his fiscal policies and proposals for improving Kensico Dam Plaza, county airport operations and housing opportunities, admitting that "affordable housing" would never really be affordable.

The session lasted about 80 minutes, but could have lasted another hour or two. Astorino fielded about 10 questions, sidestepping some of them.

“Whether you clapped or booed, we thank you,'' Astorino said. "This is democracy. . .''

The King Street School auditorium seats about 325; the first two rows were filled with Astorino supporters who gave him a standing ovation. Several even tried to shout down other audience members.

Aides handed out flyers detailing Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino's accomplishments which also were detailed in his introductory remarks about protecting taxpayers, preserving essential services and promoting economic growth. Astorino drew his strongest applause when he stuck to those topics.

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